Winners of the Judges Award and Prince of Canned Goods. LtoR: Brian Hardisan, chef and Frank Griffs of Jolly Roger with Food Pantry Executive Director Theresa Armendarez.

Some of the best Outer Banks events include food, chefs and a good cause. That was certainly the case at the 3rd Annual Holiday Chef’s Challenge at the Hilton Garden Inn Thursday evening.

The cause was a fundraiser for the Beach Food Pantry and the chefs were nine of the the Outer Banks finest. The food put the creativity and skills of the chefs on full display with a couple of different if basic rules. The chefs had one hourto create a dish using anything that is on a list of items that the Food Pantry has in stock. At least one of the items had to be a canned good.

They got pretty creative. Pigman’s Bar-b-que went all in creating a pasta e fazioli—pasta with beans—dish that featured almost exclusively Food Pantry items.Filling and spicy, it was very nice. Bluewater Grill, who placed second in the Judge’s Choice Award was serving a smoked pork tenderloin with pear chutney on cornbread.

The top prize the evening went to the Jolly Roger, and we’ll admit the barbecue ribs with purple mashed potato and collards was wonderful.

The Jolly Roger also won the prize of prizes; they were Crowned Prince of Canned Goods—the highest award for the evening.

The Chef’s Challenge is the most important fundraiser for the Beach Food Pantry that helps individuals and families in need. According to Food Pantry Executive Director Theresa Armendarez the evening was a huge success, selling out all of their tickets and generating a lot of support from local businesses.